Skrill is tied closely to the gambling and cryptocurrency industries. It is expensive and offers poor customer support. Avoid if you can.
|Transfer speed:||1-3 days|
|Trustpilot score:||1 star|
|Our score:||1 star|
What we like
- Ability to link a debit MasterCard
- Digital currencies are available
What we don’t
- Confusing pricing structure
- Difficult to contact customer service
Skrill has been around for much longer than most online money transfer services. Born at the peak of the tech boom in the early 2000s, its business model has changed over time as it adapted to the needs of its customers.
Beginning with low-value remittances, Skrill has innovated in non-traditional sectors. In recent times, this has seen a heavy focus on building a platform to support the gambling and cryptocurrency industries.
To learn more about this service and see if it’s right for you, read on for our in-depth Skrill review.
Affiliate disclosure: If you sign up with a money transfer service after being referred from our website, we might earn a referral fee. Learn more.
About Skrill Money Transfer
What is Skrill Money Transfer all about? Let’s begin our Skrill review with some general information about the service.
Skrill was founded in 2001 by Daniel Klein and Benjamin Kullmann, as an internet-focused payment service. Originally called Moneybookers, the company was established during the race to develop the first digital wallet; a race that was eventually won by PayPal. Their growth in recent times is largely as as a result of integrations with platforms such as Facebook, Skype and eBay, as well as an increasing focus on gambling.
The ownership of Skrill has changed a few times over the years. In 2007 the company was purchased by Investcorp Technology Partners. Then, in 2015 Skrill was acquired by what would become to be known as the Paysafe Group for €1.2 billion. The group briefly listed on the London Stock Exchange before eventually being sold to a consortium of private equity investors in 2017.
Skrill is currently led by Lorenzo Pellegrino, who is supported by Paysafe Group CEO, Joel Leonoff. The Paysafe Group is lucky enough to have a wealth of experience, including Danny Chazonoff as Chief Operating Officer and Elliott Wiseman as Chief Compliance Officer. More specific to the Skrill side of the business, Fayyaz Ansari is CFO of Digital Wallets.
Skrill is headquartered at the following address:
25 Canada Square, Canary Wharf
London E14 5LQ
Skrill has established local offices in the following countries:
- United States
Supported countries and currencies
Skrill Money Transfer supports the transfer of funds to approximately 35 countries. For the most part, the service facilitates its transfers using the SWIFT network, which allows it to deliver funds to all corners of the globe. The downside to this network is that there are often charges incurred by the recipient, of which Skrill has little control of.
Skrill account limits
Skrill has a minimum transfer value of £1. The maximum transfer value is £10,000, so the service is only suitable for smaller amounts.
Skrill fees and exchange rate
What are Skrill fees and exchange rates? To properly consider this question, it will take a few minutes to explore the foreign exchange market.
How the foreign exchange market works
Let’s begin with how the foreign exchange market works. Banks and other money transfer services will buy foreign currency at a price very close to the mid-market rate. They will then sell this currency to you, the customer, for a higher rate than they bought it for, taking a margin in between – known as “the spread”.
The spread is essentially a hidden cost that is not disclosed to you during the transaction. Then, in addition to the spread, some services will charge a transaction fee on top – which is typically the fee that they quote to you. In any case, the total cost of a transfer for you, the customer, is the combination of the two; the spread + transaction fee.
Q. Does the Skrill exchange rate include a spread?
A. Yes, there is a spread.
Q. What about Skrill fees?
A. No, there is no transaction fee.
But for the moment, don’t pay too much attention to the details. Rather, for the purpose of our Skrill review, let’s consider the overall cost.
Why focus on overall cost?
If you focus on the spread or transaction fee in isolation, it is easy to become lost in marketing gimmicks. Instead, it is more helpful to consider the overall cost when these factors are combined. For example, a typical bank will charge up to 5% of the overall transfer value in spread and transaction fee to complete a transfer on your behalf. Not great.
But what about Skrill Money Transfer? To determine its overall cost we need to compare a transfer with a benchmark, the mid-market rate, which in theory has no cost. Practically speaking, it is unlikely that you will ever receive the equivalent of the mid-market rate, however, your goal should be to get as close as possible.
If you can achieve a total cost of less than 1% of the overall transaction value then you are on the right track. However, it really depends on what your needs are and if you are willing to pay a little bit extra for additional features, advice, or research. To find out the mid-market rate of any currency pairing, use this calculator at xe.com.
What is the cost of Skrill?
To calculate the cost of Skrill, we received three quotes to exchange British Pounds (GBP) into Euro (EUR) – for low, medium, and high values. The overall cost of each transaction was then compared against the mid-market rate and represented as a percentage of the transfer value.
Here is the calculation:
|Transfer value||Overall cost|
An average cost of 1.04% means that for every £1,000 sent, on average £10.40 will be lost in spread + fees. By using this figure, we can make a general representation of Skrill across a range of transfer values. Of course, it is not a perfect representation by any means, but it is helpful for comparative purposes.
Important note on SWIFT: You should be aware that any transfer conducted via the SWIFT network may incur additional hidden charges by correspondent banks; the exact cost depending on the amount of the transfer and the recipient bank. In our experience, these fees can be as high as £25 per transaction.
Skrill review: Market comparison
SO, how does Skrill compare to other services in the market? To help you determine its relative competitiveness, we have prepared a chart. Beside the name of each service, we have listed its average cost, speed of transfer, receiving countries, and our review score – sorted from highest to lowest.
To sort this chart by column, click its respective headings. If you are reading on mobile, you may need to scroll horizontally to view all fields.
|wdt_ID||Service||Ave. cost||Speed||Countries||Our score||Review|
|1||Azimo||0.89%||1-3 days||200||2 stars||Read review|
|2||OrbitRemit||0.43%||1-3 days||43||4 stars||Read review|
|3||Currencies Direct||1.79%||2-4 days||188||3 stars||Read review|
|4||OFX||1.20%||3-5 days||226||4 stars||Read review|
|5||CurrencyFair||0.45%||2-4 days||157||5 stars||Read review|
|6||Paysera||0.97%||3-5 days||174||3 stars||Read review|
|7||MoneyGram||3.50%||1-3 days||194||2 stars||Read review|
|8||RationalFX||1.16%||1-3 days||201||3 stars||Read review|
|9||Remitly||0.77%||1-3 days||58||2 stars||Read review|
|10||Ria Money Transfer||3.06%||1-3 days||158||2 stars||Read review|
If you would like to learn more about the rationale of our Skrill review, take a look at our review methodology.
A typical transfer with Skrill Money Transfer takes 1-3 business days, from sending to receipt. The exact duration will depend on a few factors, including the currency pairings involved, the transfer value, as well as the particular systems of the sending and receiving bank.
Skrill payment options
How do payment features affect our Skrill review? Let’s take a look at its capabilities.
A spot contract consists of a single payment from one currency to another at the currently available exchange rate. If you need to send money right away, simply login to the Skrill app or website and with a couple of clicks a transfer can be arranged.
Skrill customer service number and support
Skrill customer service can be contacted by phone, Skrill support email, or through the use of a form on their website. Here are the Skrill customer service details for a couple of its offices:
+44 203 308 2520 (International)
+44 203 308 2519 (United Kingdom)
In our experience, we found Skrill customer service to be friendly and helpful. We did not have to wait too long to speak with someone on the phone, and our queries by email have been answered in a prompt and professional manner.
Is Skrill safe?
As a customer, is Skrill safe to use? Let’s take a look at some of its security measures.
Skrill is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK and is licensed as an Electronic Money Institution under reference 900001. Its international subsidiaries are regulated by the relevant authorities in the jurisdiction of their operations, such as FinCEN in the United States.
Customer funds are held in trust
In accordance with the standards imposed by government regulators, the funds of Skrill customers are held in segregated accounts and are kept apart from the company’s own operating accounts. This ensures the security of customer funds, should Skrill encounter financial difficulty.
Website is securely protected
The Skrill website is protected with TLS encryption, which prevents sensitive data from being intercepted during your visit. You can confirm that this is in place by recognising a green padlock next to the website’s URL on your browser. Skrill has also implemented two-factor authentication.
Is Skrill legit? A look at its reputation
Is Skill legit or are there complaints of a Skrill scam? Let’s take a look at its reputation.
As of publication, Skrill has received over 13,000 reviews on Trustpilot with an average rating of 4 out of 5 stars; representing a positive experience in 80 percent of interactions with its customers.
Here are our observations of the feedback posted:
- Useful for countries not supported by other services
- An alternative to PayPal
- Poor customer support
- High fees
- Long verification process
Upon viewing the Facebook and Twitter feeds of Skrill, we can see a range of interactions between the service and its customers. It appears that queries raised by customers on these platforms are addressed same-day.
The mainstream media reporting of Skrill is generally positive. Most articles highlight the advantage of using money transfer apps over traditional banking services.
Tills ring for online payment service.The Sunday Times
Online pay pioneer in £600m sale.The Sunday Times
Skrill mobile app and user experience
How does product design affect our Skrill review? Let’s take a look at the user experience.
The Skrill website has been designed thoughtfully, with special attention being paid to user experience and functionality. It is available in 12 languages; English, Chinese, Czech, French, German, Greek, Italian, Polish, Romanian, Russian, Spanish, and Turkish.
Skrill mobile app
A Skrill mobile app has been developed for Apple and Android devices. By using the Skrill mobile app you can access your account at any time and use its core features, such as initiating new payments or tracking the status of in-progress transfers.
The registration process is very quick and takes around 1 minute. All you need to do is enter your email address and a password.
Before you can commence transferring funds with Skrill, you will first need to verify your identity. This will typically require providing two types of documents:
- Photo identification, such as a passport or drivers licence
- Skrill address verification, such as a bank or utility statement
How to transfer money to Skrill account?
As a part of our Skrill review, we will take you through an example transaction. If you would like some guidance in navigating your own account, you can follow along below.
Step 1 – Sign up and login
Visit skrill.com and log in. To begin a transaction, click Send.
Step 2 – Select payment method
First, select how you want to transfer your funds. You can either send money from your Skrill wallet, a bank account or credit card.
Step 3 – Select currencies
Select the country of your recipient and the currency denomination of their account. You will also need to select the delivery method. Click Continue.
Step 4 – Enter recipient details
Enter the personal information of your recipient, including their bank details if that is the delivery method chosen. Click Continue.
Step 5 – Confirm transaction
The terms of the quote are presented, and a reason for the payment is requested. Once you are happy to proceed, click Continue.
Step 6 – Enter payment details
You are provided with instructions to proceed with your part of the payment. Now is the time to enter your credit card details, or transfer your funds into the local bank account of Skrill.
Step 7 – Track payment
When your funds are received by Skrill, it will complete the final leg of the transfer. You can track its status online or with the Skrill mobile app. You will also receive email updates throughout the process.
Finally, once the transfer is complete its status will be updated accordingly. The funds should arrive in your recipient’s bank account shortly.
Review disclosure: Unfortunately, we were not able to test Skrill with a transaction of our own. As a result, we cannot confirm the efficacy of the service.
Skrill review: Final thoughts
Skrill Money Transfer provides a basic service for international money payments. Its has strong links to the cryptocurrency and gambling industries, and this drives much of its popularity. As far as Skrill’s money transfer service goes, however, it’s not one of the best options out there.
The service is clunky, expensive, and has a reputation for poor customer service. As far as we can tell, there is nothing that Skrill does that other services don’t do better. With the availability of high-quality alternatives such as WorldRemit and TransferGo, it is difficult to recommend using Skrill.
If you have any questions or feedback about our Skrill review, let us know in the comments below.